sorcerer - revised (ocr.ww4254)

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BY CONRAD HUBBARD, HEATHER GROVE AND SCOTT TAYLOR

CREDITSAuthors: Conrad Hubbard, Heather Grove, Scott Taylor Additional Writing: Jess Heinig and Chris Nasipak Development: Jess Heinig Editing: John Chambers Art Direction: Aileen Miles Interior Art: Langdon Foss, Matthew Mitchell, Ron Spencer Cover Art: David Leri Front and Back Cover Design: Becky Jollensten Layout and Typesetting: Becky Jollensten

SPECIAL THANKSConrad "Webslave" Hubbard, who put things in order and even got everyone chatting about it. Kraig "Tingly" Blackwelder, for sharing his journeys into weekend retreats in exquisite detail, John "Oedipus" Chambers, for his reaction to Kraig's journeys.

2000 White Wolf Publishing, Inc. All rights reserved. Reproduction without the written permission of the publisher is expressly forbidden, except for the purposes of reviews, and for blank character sheets, which may be reproduced for personal use only. White Wolf, Vampire the Masquerade, Vampire the Dark Ages, Vampire, Mage the Ascension, World of Darkness and Aberrant are registered trademarks of White Wolf Publishing, Inc. All rights reserved. Werewolf the Apocalypse, Wraith the Oblivion, Changeling the Dreaming, Hunter the Reckoning, Werewolf the Wild West, Mage the Sorcerers Crusade, Wraith the Great War, Trinity, Sorcerer Revised, Kinfolk Unsung Heroes and Demon Hunter X are trademarks of White Wolf Publishing, Inc. All rights reserved. All characters, names, places and text herein are copyrighted by White Wolf Publishing, Inc. The mention of or reference to any company or product in these pages is not a challenge to the trademark or copyright concerned. This book uses the supernatural for settings, characters and themes. All mystical and supernatural elements are fiction and intended for entertainment purposes only. Reader discretion is advised. For a free White Wolf catalog call 1-800-454-WOLF. Check out White Wolf online at http://www.white-wolf.com; alt.games.whitewolf and rec.games, frp.storyteller PRINTED IN USA.

Cettrerrs PROLOGUE: CHAPTER CHAPTER CHAPTER CHAPTER CHAPTER CHAPTER FIVE: Green ONE: TWO: THREE: FOUR: SIX: The for the Twilight Character Paths Psychic and Storytelling Earth World Societies Creation Rituals Phenomena 48

INTRODUCTION Sorcerous

10 20 42 58 88 110

PRELUDE GREEN FOR THE EARTH

Jeb Moran stared at the earth beneath his feet. The ground was dry and dusty; most of the grass had already died. Jeb's skin was dry and dusty too he refused to use the rose-scented moisturizer his wife Mandy bought at the grocery, so cracks split the calluses on his fingertips open. Short, gray hair stuck to his forehead in the heat. "So you see," he said, "if this

crop dies, we'll lose the house." His voice cracked. "Mandy's relatives hate me, so we'll have no place to go." He kept his eyes on the ground. Bruce Clark nodded, his eyes on the sky. The sky was clear and achingly blue, and the weather report that morning had only predicted more of the same. His own dark hair stuck up into the air in places where he'd run his hands through it, and rivulets of sweat beaded along his jaw-line. He was a big man, and he moved

PRELUDE GREEN FOR THE EARTH

5

slowly, thoughtfully. He nodded. "That would be a right shame, it would," He chose his words carefully he knew how difficult it had been for Jeb to come to him, and he didn't want to hurt the man's pride. "I'd hate to lose you as neighbors, I'm sure there'll be some rain soon." Jeb glanced up at him sharply, "You're sure?" "As sure as I can be," Bruce smiled. "Now why don't you go home. Weather like this is nothing to be running around in; you heard the advisory on the radio. I'll see you tomorrow," Jeb relaxed visibly, "I'll do that." Bruce nodded and smiled. "But sweetheart, are you sure this is such a good idea?" Emily's brow furrowed right up the middle, pointing straight to the part in her red hair. "Your father said that big things like rainstorms were only for emergencies..." Bruce put his hands on his wife's arms and smiled down into her warm brown eyes. "I can't let Jeb down, you know that. Now please call my sister and tell her to come home for dinner tonight." E m i l y pulled her flower-printed calendar and address book from the hand-carved bookcase next to the dining room table. She flipped through it u n t i l she found the right page and picked up the phone. Bruce kissed his wife on the forehead. "Thank you." E m i l y smoothed one sweaty hand against her yellow dress. "Well, like you said, we can't let Jeb down." She smiled. * Dinner had come to an end. Emily and Susan cleared away the last of the dishes; Emily had brought out the good blue tablecloth for the occasion, and Susan had made her famous maple-apple pie. Everyone was stuffed and happy. Emily shooed Anne, her 12-year-old daughter, into the kitchen, "Take care of dishes; we need to handle the crops." "Can't I help? I'm old enough now. I've been doing my studies." Anne put her hands on her jeans-clad hips. "Don't argue with me." Emily glared at Anne, and Anne turned to the kitchen with a roll of her eyes. Bruce watched her go and shrugged. "We should initiate her soon. She is old enough." "Oh, don't you let her hear you, or she won't give up nearly so easily next time," Emily teased him. By the light of a flashlight, Bruce took a sturdy hunting knife from the trunk and a grass-green beeswax candle. He stuffed the knife under his arm, while he pulled out a cheap plastic lighter and lit the wick. "Green 6 SORCERER

for the earth," he whispered as he put the lighter in his pocket and turned off the flashlight. Susan had taken out another knife, and both of the women lit their candles, whispering the same benediction. Bruce held his candle high, as he drew a circle around them in the dirt with his knife he tried to telax and hold his concentration as he felt the hot wax drip onto his fingers. He put the candle down on a rock near the center of the circle and lifted an old, leather-bound book from the trunk. He read rough, guttural words from its pages no one knew what the words meant, but they'd been taught to pronounce the syllables long ago. Not knowing what he said only heightened the sense that something special was about to happen. He felt the quickening of his heartbeat, at once familiar and exciting. He passed the book to Emily, and each family member in turn read from its pages. Emily put her candle on the ground and stepped to the center of the circle. She closed her eyes and reached out with her hands and her mind. She felt a spark as her awareness touched the sky, and she gasped for breath. "As our fathers and mothers before us have always done, we call to the earth and beg a reply. Bring rain for the crops, or we shall die." In the distance, a faint peal of thunder sounded, Susan looked up into the night sky at the sound of thunder and shuddered she'd done things like this for years, but it never failed to bring a flush to her cheeks. She brought her attention back to the circle and took her place in the center. "In return, we give of ourselves. We nourish the earth, so that it might nourish us in return," She ran her knife along the inside of her left arm and stiffened at the pain. Her breath hissed as she squeezed her arm so the blood would drip onto the dirt and the yellowed grass. Another peal of thunder sounded, a l i t t l e closer this time. A cool breeze cut through the heat. Bruce closed the book and put it back in the trunk. The knives joined it, and the extinguished candles. The flashlight shone out over the field once again. Emily laughed as she shut her eyes and turned her face up to the breeze. She could already feel the moisture in it, the promise of rain. "It feels incredible," she said. "The magic or the coming rain?" her husband asked with a smile as he wrapped his arms around her from behind. They heard Susan gather up the last contents of the trunk and carry it back toward the tarmhouse. "Both." She pressed her hands into his and stood for a long time, until a drop of rain fell onto her face, landing in the corner of her closed eye, She shivered. Nothing had ever felt so perfect in the entire world.

Prelude: GREEN FoR THE EARTH 7

Welcome to the newly revised edition of Sorcerer, the book of Numina for Mage: The Ascension. While Mage deals with those phenomenal humans who've Awakened to the power to change reality, Sorcerer details those who have discovered a more limited path to power. Still, they're nothing to sneeze at a sorcerer, though perhaps not as flexible, is just as much a dweller in the occult world as any mage. A sorcerer leads a sort of half-Awakened life, right on the cusp of the magical world but without the breadth and flexibility of a full Awakened mage. Grasping at the mythic threads held in legend and history, some resurrect ancient magics from ages long ago. Others push themselves to extraordinary understanding of science or spirituality and develop the capacity to exceed normal people in phenomenal ways. One can hardly call sorcerers "limited" they have for more wisdom, and far more concomitant peril, than most mundane humans. While Awakened mages are the trailblazers who forge new ways, the sorcerers are those humans who dare to walk those paths opened by the Awakened instead of complacently waiting for the world to come to them.

Herein, you'll find newly updated rules for sorcerers, their Paths, their societies and practices, plus a complete set of psychic Numina, new guidelines for storytelling and character creation rules for the numinous mortals of Mage. So, without further ado... Chapter One: The Twilight World introduces the world from the point of view of a sorcerer. Chapter Two: Sorcerous Societies looks into the many groups of sorcerers, how they operate, who they recruit and what they believe. Here you'll also discover the role of sor